NGOs … Nuisance to Government Operations? (#6)

Click the picture for related article @ THE TIMES OF INDIA

Egypt –  “The activists – who worked at non-governmental organisations – were on trial for allegedly receiving illegal foreign funding and stirring up unrest.” BBC News

India – “The government intensified its drive against NGOs it suspects of being hostile to national interests” Times of India

West Bank“Reporters Without Borders cited a February 10 protest at Nabi Saleh, near the West Bank city of Ramallah, where it said: “Two Palestinian journalists were injured by tear gas grenades and rubber bullets fired by Israeli soldiers.” Associated Foreign Press

Pakistan – The CIA’s use of cover of humanitarian activity for this purpose casts doubt on intentions and integrity of all humanitarian actors in Pakistan, thereby undermining the international humanitarian community’s efforts to eradicate polio, provide critical health services and extend life-saving assistance during times of crisis like the floods seen in Pakistan over the past two years,” InterAction chief Samuel A. Worthington said.

Zimbabwe The party’s central committee report to the conference delegates claimed that there were about 2,500 NGOs operating in Zimbabwe and some of them were pushing a “regime change” agenda. New Zimbabwe

Canada – Greenpeace Canada’s executive director, Bruce Cox, said the government is trying to “intimidate and smear” legitimate, non-violent groups that threaten its interests. CTV NEWS

I could have added many many more articles where NGO’s all across the planet are causing huge headaches for governments from all over the world.  Non Governmental Organizations generally are humanitarian, environmental, rights and peace advocates.  If you read some of the articles above it is apparent that there are very real and serious issues to be dealt with, which due to neglect of domestic governments and or IGO’s have been left by the wayside.  When an NGOs work oversteps or interferes with the political agenda(s) of the political parties’ in the countries which they are working they are described as extremists, spies, threats, radical, fanatics, fundamentalist..to name but a few.  Even in Canada, Greenpeace has been labeled as extremist when it comes to oil…

But the India article brings up something that needs to be considered carefully.  Would the USA actually resort to using NGO’s as cover for operations in countries abroad?  After all, NGOs would have no ties to the government, so if anything came back to the US they could wash their hands of the situation.  It is well known that NGOs are an effective foreign policy tool for countries to utilize but, to use them as cover for covert or military style operations seems…just not right.  The international community has enough trouble trusting IGOs such as the various United Nations peacekeeping forces deployed all over the world.  It would be sad to see countries completely abandon the legitimate global organizations which fight aids and poverty in the name of political safety and or the security of capitalist interests.  Let’s hope that in the future, governments will be more transparent with their foreign policy intentions for the sake of world wide humanitarian aid.

AG

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2 Comments

  1. jd

     /  March 7, 2012

    This is a very good post. As for your question: “Would the USA actually resort to using NGO’s as cover for operations in countries abroad?” I’m afraid that the answer is ‘yes’! See this article:
    http://www.dawn.com/2012/03/02/american-ngos-assail-cia-over-fake-polio-drive.html

    The opening paragraph:
    “ISLAMABAD: An alliance of about 200 US-based NGOs, many of them working in humanitarian operations in Pakistan, has expressed deep concern over a vaccination campaign carried out in Abbottabad last year by the Central Intelligence Agency and expressed fear that the action may jeopardise the lives of aid workers in the country.”

    Reply

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